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From Brandy to Sativa: A Timeline of Intoxicating Baby Names

April 1, 2021 namerology 4 Comments

From Brandy to Sativa: A Timeline of Intoxicating Baby Names

April 1, 2021 Namerology 4 Comments
Year	Event
1958	Tequila debuts in America's name stats, thanks to a hit song by The Champs in which the word Tequila is the only lyric
1962	Sherry becomes the first intoxicating name to rank in the US top 50
1970	Sativa, as in cannabis sativa, debuts as a baby name
1972	The song "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl) hits #1 and the name Brandy soars, ultimately becoming the top intoxicating name of all time
1975	The name Chablis begins a '70s-'80s run in the baby name stats, fueled by major tv campaigns from American winemakers like Almaden and Paul Masson
1977	Tequila hits its all-time high of 128 babies, as its trendy '70s sound meets Jimmy Buffet's "Margaritaville"
1986	A "wine cooler" craze is led by the brand Bartles & Jaymes, and James gains an alternate spelling. Almost 500 boys are named Jaymes from 1985-88
1991	The names Champagne and Cristal (a luxury champagne label) both hit their all-time peaks
1998	The name Moët, as in the champagne maker Moët & Chandon frequently name-checked in hip-hop songs, is given to 20 girls
2002	The name Chardonnay leaps into use in England, inspired by a character on the tv series footballers wive$
2012	The name Skyy peaks, its growth having paralleled the market growth of Skyy Vodka
2019	Hennessy reaches its peak…so far. The spelling Hennessey is equally common as a surname, but the cognac brand dominates baby name spelling
2019	Indica, as in Cannabis indica, continues a three-decade-long climb as cannabis laws are relaxed across the country

Intoxicants and baby names may seem an unlikely match. But name trends reflect society, and there’s no denying that alcohol and drugs are a big and ever-changing part of our culture. When name style, pop culture and liquor/drug trends coincide, it can be a potent fashion combination.

Take a tour through some highlights of “intoxicating” name trends over the past 70+ years. Note that this is a largely female style category; unless otherwise noted, the statistics refer to girls’ names.

Timeline of baby names inspired by intoxicants

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  • Brid April 13, 2021 at 12:05 pm

    Well. The word sativus/sativa/sativum means “cultivated”, and lots of cultivated plants are called that. This might nog be generally known.
    But it should be obvious that Indica means “from India” – the one person of that name I have been in contact with was born in India. No drug related thoughts from her parents.

    • Namerology
      Namerology April 13, 2021 at 6:24 pm

      No question, not every child given one of these names was named for the intoxicant! But unlike, say, Mary Jane or Margarita, Indica is not a traditional name.

  • holey
    holey May 2, 2021 at 11:21 am

    This reminds me of an old name joke from Roseanne, where Becky complains that she doesn’t like her name. Roseanne tells her she should be grateful: “It was the 70s; you could have been named Frampton or Chablis.”

  • katjsh
    katjsh June 20, 2021 at 4:52 am

    I know of several Alize’s but they’re all spelled differently. My niece’s is probably the least traditional…my brother swears he was joking about naming her Hennessy had she been a boy! We happily took our Allie. For searchability reasons 4l3’z4y3

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